The presence of aerosols in the atmosphere is still subjected to a great concern of interest for a wide range of geophysical and environmental problems varying from local issues to global scale. The levels of the particulate matter (PM) (coarse, PM10, and fine, PM2.5) have been under scrutiny during the past decade mainly because of their effect on health, climate and the environment. Predicting PM10 and PM2.5 levels and their trends in Europe is still highly uncertain due to the lack of the monitoring data in large European Union (EU) areas, especially in the EU members by 2004. Moreover, for the countries entering the EU in 2007 such data are very scarce. Presently, the north-eastern Romania, the new most eastern site of the EU, is highly deficient in measurements of PM atmospheric burden and information concerning their chemical composition. As studies performed on wet deposition (north-eastern Romania) revealed that its chemical composition is affected by the long-range transport process, important contributions are expected also for the PM fraction but this assumption must be accompanied by direct measurements. The main goal of the proposed work will be focused on i) performing chemical speciation analysis and identifying major chemical classes in the PM composition at 4 sites in the north-eastern Romania: rural, near-city, urban and kerbsite, ii) identifying the main factors controlling the PM levels in the area, both in the coarse and fine mode, and iii) performing an appropriate source apportionment by estimating the source contribution and determining the chemical composition of each source. To characterise the chemical composition of the PM fraction chromatographic, spectrometric or spectrophotometric techniques will be used. The proposed work is intended to be performed such as to supply for the first time a long-term data-base measurement of PM at one of the most new eastern site of the EU, close to a large urban area in the north-eastern Romania.
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